Widely regarded as one of greatest stage and screen actors both in his native Great Britain and internationally, twice nominated for the Oscar and recipient of every major theatrical award in the UK and US, Ian Murray McKellen was born on May 25, 1939 in Burnley, Lancashire, England, to Margery Lois (Sutcliffe) and Denis Murray McKellen, a civil engineer and lay preacher. He is of Scottish, Northern Irish, and English descent. During his early childhood, his parents moved with Ian and his older sister, Jean, to the mill town of Wigan. It was in this small town that young Ian rode out World War II. He soon developed a fascination with acting and the theatre, which was encouraged by his parents. They would take him to plays, those by William Shakespeare, in particular. The amateur school productions fostered Ian's growing passion for theatre.
When Ian was of age to begin attending school, he made sure to get roles in all of the productions. At Bolton School in particular, he developed h